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Reach for the Sky

How far away does it feel for you to reach your sky... your plans, your dreams?

I was taught as a child to always try to reach my goals, and I was encouraged to keep moving forward while planning for new things ahead. I did. However, sometimes I knew that even then, I was reaching far beyond what I could probably achieve.

That didn’t stop me from dreaming and trying and planning. Even today I think about something I’ve wanted, & we all should do that. What is the limit of our sky?

I bought paint supplies years ago and many of them are still sitting in my closet, waiting for those unfinished canvases that were such a good idea at the time. You might have a journal or a computer that you hardly use, but still have plans to write a book one day.

People who have written books all have one thing in common… it all begins with page one. Don’t worry about having enough for the entire book. Just focus on writing the first page, and pat yourself on the back while you enjoy that little adrenaline rush.

In my 'golden olden' days when I was a child, sewing, patchwork quilting, and embroidery work were done mostly by hand stitching. I really didn’t want to learn those skills at that time. I wanted to be tramping through the bush-trails behind our farm with my dad and my dog Shep. I wanted to play baseball like the boys, and not get lectured by Mom telling me I shouldn’t be doing that because it was too rough for a girl. Instead of knitting a scarf, I wanted to be out chasing butterflies and picking wildflowers, or watching an army of ants at work.

One summer just after I had my appendix out, I had to take it easy for a couple of weeks and thought I was going to be bored, but my Granny, bless her heart, had planned for a long time to teach me how to make a quilt, and this time I couldn’t run away from her. After all was said and done and many hours had passed, I was glad that I hadn’t run away. The result was a patchwork quilt that she and I made together. I even wrote a book about it many years later, a teen novella titled, "Lilly Picked Up The Pieces".

I learned many life lessons from sewing that quilt that I’ve never forgotten, and it all began with cutting out that very first square that I had chosen. Mom and Granny used the old Singer treadle machine for the big parts. The fine work was done with needle and thread and plenty of Band-Aids from poking myself, because I could never master the art of using a thimble. My summer vacation wasn’t going to waste at all, and I look back now on how I enjoyed the time we had together. I really didn’t see the blessing then, when my Mom and Granny laid out the finished product and were proud of me.

Many years later I realized how much it meant to my Mom, and I’ll always be grateful for that. I never made another quilt, but I did learn to crochet and had years of designing my own tops and outfits. I took some of my plain farm clothes and made them into colorful creations. I made pillow covers and wall hangings for my room and I really loved the art of crocheting and designing things I wanted. I even made outfits for my teddy bears.

Even though I was reaching for the sky that summer from a porch chair instead of playing baseball out in the field, I was content. I knew this wasn’t going to last and that it would change quickly, and it did. Life is still like that today. Not all of our dreams come true, but it is still wonderful to hope and plan.

The Lord says He wants us to have prosperity, hope, and a future. I try to remember to look at my successes and not the things I’ve tried that haven’t worked. I remind myself that God holds the key to everything and knows the big picture, so there must be a reason why He said ‘No’ to some of my requests.

I pray faithfully that I will always want to learn new things and that I'll keep reaching and looking up to the sky, because I know all my answers come from there. God is watching down over all of us, so yes - go ahead and reach for the sky, because our help will come from the Lord. Keep focused and keep looking up, and when you have the chance, write out your own hopes and expectations. Don’t worry about the time or the age that you are at. Just remember what your dreams were when they were in the planning stages, and you will perhaps find that many other unexpected plans have come through instead. Remember the way God works is not our way, but His.

I am glad to be at this point in my life, because I don’t think I would trust my own judgement for everything back when I was a child. Then I wrote about childish things, but as I grew, so did my writing, and I have carried all the things that I’ve learned with me over the years. Happiness, disappointments, joy, illness, loss and sadness were all scattered across the thousands of blessings I’ve had in my lifetime. Just like that patchwork quilt so many years ago, all are part of the package in the stories I write, and I have brought them this far because I needed the experiences to write about.

I believe I still have more coming. I still go to bed with anticipation for tomorrow to see what will transpire in my life. Will there be a new memory jog from my childhood, or my travels or whatever, to write about and share with my readers?

Thank you and bless you for taking the time to read this today, and just keep reaching out with every opportunity that comes your way. The sky is truly the limit.

Blessings, Marlane.

Excerpted from the book "101 Roads" by Marlane Lillian Mazur.


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